PaydayNow explains how fans can help out today’s independent artists
This epidemic of the coronavirus will force people to look out for one another, or else the economy will collapse, according to an independent musician. PaydayNow asked the music business how they might help for the first time.
Caroline Rose, a synthpop singer-songwriter, says being a musician in 2020 was difficult enough. Later, the coronavirus outbreak closed down all live music and touring for the foreseeable future, depriving most professional musicians of their primary financial source. There are a lot of traveling musicians that are going to be out of work for the next several months because of the economy.
Musicians need assistance. Musicians like Rose, whose new record was released last month and whose two-month spring tour was postponed, as a result, have been struggling to make ends meet merely to pay their rent this month. She says that if people don’t look out for one another, “this economy will just implode.”
A range of artists and industry professionals were consulted by PaydayNow to provide the most practical ways for fans to help independent musicians during this crisis.
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1. Don’t be afraid to provide monetary compensation.
Artists are divided on whether or not they should ask for money upfront without offering anything in return, which comes as no surprise. If an artist links their Venmo, PayPal, Patreon, or GoFundMe account in the coming months, they probably need financial assistance. By “accumulating these things quickly, and it’s beneficial,” Janiva Magness, the roots singer, adds. Even if a musician isn’t making it clear that they accept donations, it doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate it. Artists should be approached directly by Magness and asked if they need assistance.
2. Merch is still the most popular product.
Rose says that the most effective way to support an artist is to purchase. “There is no benefit to streaming… “Merchandise makes up the bulk of my income.” Even while you may still buy CDs and vinyl, it’s far easier to show your support for an artist by purchasing a T-shirt, hoodie, or poster from their website and wearing it around town. Savoir Adoire’s Paul Hammer says, “It really goes a long way, and quite often that is money the band can see right away.” “In contrast to streaming, which might take months or even years to complete.”
3. As the artist’s size decreases, so does your help’s importance.
Don’t forget to keep track of where your money goes. People who aren’t yet full-time musicians but who aren’t yet well-established in the service business are particularly hard hit: Part-time musicians may have just lost their last stable source of income when restaurants and bars close in several places throughout the United States.
Bandcamp is offering a discount on all purchases this Friday to support lesser-known artists. LVL-UP guitarist Mike Caridi, owner of Double Double Whammy and the Glow, says, “Support not just your favorite musician but also lesser and coming talents who are likely to battle more.
“Industry darlings don’t need help as much as little musicians who have had their tours canceled. Consider paying extra for an album on Bandcamp than the listed price. In addition, if you’ve already bought it, you may watch it or buy it for a friend who is also a fan.”
4. Donate directly to organizations that assist artists.
Several well-known music assistance groups are good places to start if you’d want to support musicians in general but aren’t sure where to begin. Because of this, the Sweet Relief Artists Fund has been able to help musicians in need since 1993.
In the words of Sweet Relief’s Aric Steinberg, “a fan may feel safe in the knowledge that their money will not be wasted.” Artists may apply for financial assistance from an emergency COVID-19 fund created by Sweet Relief. As an alternative, the Recording Academy’s nonprofit MusiCares gives financial aid to artists in need and has established a COVID-19 relief fund.
5. You shouldn’t toss away concert tickets that have been postponed.
Keep your ticket even if you can’t make it to the rescheduled show, and you can still help out a touring artist. John Moreland’s manager, Traci Thomas, cautions, “Don’t ask for a refund.” If the performer has already announced additional performances, you may resell or give away your ticket.
Plan to watch more live music until things go back to normal. Otherwise, expect to go out more than usual. For James McMurtry, a Texas singer/songwriter who makes most of his money by traveling, the best thing fans can do for them is to stay well. After a few minutes, he remarked, “Come back out and see us if this gets better.”
6. You’ll be able to purchase virtual concert tickets soon.
Even with the absence of live music, musicians around the country have devised creative ways to monetize their talents. Some musicians, such as BJ Barham of American Aquarium, perform their whole albums live for their fans through live streaming from the comfort of their living rooms.
Like Benji Hughes’ declaration last week that he would create customized songs for fans at a meager fee, more imaginative ideas has emerged. Singer L Devine is planning a “URL tour” to see her perform on a different social media site each night.
As Rose puts it, there is an urgent need for assistance for those who are “trapped in their houses right now,”. Artists that create music-based content should begin charging for their work in the coming weeks. Putting out music that offers solace is a beautiful thing to do at this time.
7. It’s time to shout out to your favorite bands and entertainers.
Even if you’re strapped with cash, you may still show your appreciation for your favorite performers. Singer and songwriter Whitney Rose urges her followers to help spread the word about herself. If you request our music on the radio and engage with us on social media, your campaign might get attention. Hammer’s words: “If you donate, please spread the word.” In the following months, expect to see many individuals using their computers.
8. Examine the activity of the businesses and workers in your area.
When the venues reopen, touring musicians will rely on their nationwide network of independent music venues and clubs. James McMurtry, a singer-songwriter, claims he cares more about service workers than the rest of us. Become a capitalist at any time.” Pacific Records CEO Brian Witkin recently suggested that fans should buy merchandise from “their favorite local venue” and the work of their favorite artists. If you want to make a meaningful difference, give to the individuals who work at the venues themselves instead of donating to the arts.
More than a hundred pubs and restaurants needing assistance are connected to Spencer Tweedy’s Chicago Service Relief website. Chicago’s legendary rock bar Empty Bottle has launched a GoFundMe campaign to keep its staff fed and clothed while the club is closed. Another alternative is to give to the US Bartending Guild’s Covid-19 Relief Campaign, which offers bartenders and service industry workers an emergency assistance program.
9. Please vote in favor of the structural change that will benefit artists of all kinds.
Some musicians are urging their fans to use the current public health crisis as an opportunity to study the structural reasons that affect musicians, who are more likely than the general population to be without health insurance. It’s the month of November.
While Lee Bains of Birmingham-based rock band Lee Bains and the Glory Fires says that if everyone who wanted to buy Lee Bains and the Glory Fires merch to show support for the band would instead vote for Bernie Sanders and other candidates who support the likes of rent control, medical and student loan debt forgiveness as well as Medicare For All, “I would be very grateful,” he says.
In this case, the social safety net is essential. Many of us cannot afford insurance because of our high levels of debt. In our company, sick leave and unemployment benefits are absent. What are our country’s values?